The San Francisco 49ers faked out much of the league when they ultimately drafted quarterback Trey Lance third overall on Thursday, a decision that came after weeks of speculation about Mac Jones being the preferred option. It turns out this was partly because the team’s decision-makers didn’t even know what each other were thinking until very late in the process.
NFL Network’s Jim Trotter did a deep dive into the process behind the Lance pick, and it includes some fascinating information. Both GM John Lynch and coach Kyle Shanahan spent weeks assessing the quarterback options that would be available to them at No. 3 overall. However, the two men did not even discuss which quarterback they preferred until Monday, not wanting to influence each other’s thinking.
It was Shanahan who finally tipped his hand privately on Monday, asking Lynch if he was “ready to draft Trey.” Lynch had preferred Lance all along despite the Jones speculation, and he suspected Shanahan felt the same way.
It’s becoming more apparent that all the Jones speculation was just that — speculation. Pretty much the entire Niners organization was left in the dark about who the pick would be. When the two people in charge of making the selection didn’t even speak about it to each other until three days before the draft, it’s pretty obvious how the pick never got out.